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News Notes – New England

Hall Spars and Rigging ships 176-foot mast

Bristol, R.I.-based Hall Spars and Rigging recently prepared three superyacht masts to ship to WallyEurope yard in Fano, Italy.

Rhode Island-based Spars and Rigging loads a truck with its masts headed to the Wally yard in Italy.

Models include the 148-foot masted Wally 101; the Wally 80, with a 121-foot mast; and the Wally 130, with a 176-foot mast.

The masts were carefully packed and stacked on a truck, and the associated parts filled a 40-foot container, according to Hall Spars and Rigging. In addition, the Hall 20-foot work container was readied and sent with the shipment. Hall project manager David Moffet was to join Med Manager, Andrea Merani, and field tech Mike Brady in Italy for the stepping and sail trials this spring.

The hull of the new Wally 101 keeps the displacement to 57 tons, using advanced composite technology with pre-preg carbon. The Wally 130 was designed by Javier Soto Acebal, and its light displacement hull carries 11 tons of water ballast. The Wally 80, the sixth seamless Hall mast built for a Wally 80, is constructed of high-modulus carbon, with Hall Auto-Locks and PBO Rigging.

For information, see

Herreshoff Museum hosts Classic Yacht Symposium

The Classic Yacht Symposium will take place April 9-11 in Bristol, R.I. The three-day event will include presentations on subjects related to excellence in classic yacht restoration, replication or use; adaptation of classic designs to modern materials; and technical details of rigging, fittings, powering and rating rules.

The event is sponsored by the Herreshoff Marine Museum/America’s Cup Hall of Fame and the New England Section of the Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers.

For information, visit, and click on the CYS link.

Newport show features consignment tent

The 35th Annual Newport (R.I.) Spring Boat Show will once again offer a complete selection of boats and boating products during its May 15-17 run at the Newport Yachting Center.

The show will feature the Marine Consignment Tent.

“Last year was our first year and it was very well-received,” says show director Nancy Piffard. “We invite our exhibitors as well as the general public to sell their marine-related items that would otherwise go unused.”

Items can be dropped off at the Newport Yachting Center from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. May 11 through 14. Boat show staff will do the selling.

Owners will receive 60 percent of the sale price and partial proceeds will go to the Seaman’s Church Institute, which provides services and support to those working on the waterfront, as well as visiting and local yachtsmen.

For information, contact Betsy at (401) 846-1115, ext. 219, or visit the

Brownell Boat Stands under new ownership

Brownell Boat Stands, of Mattapoisett, Mass., was sold to new owners who plan to take the company’s distribution network international, including to Australia and South America.

The stand manufacturer, founded 50 years ago by the Brownell family, was sold to Peter T. Kavanaugh and Cathy Mayall. The newly formed Kavanaugh-Brownell Boat Stands will retain use of the Brownell Boat Stands name.

“Brownell Boat Stands has a great reputation in the industry, and we look forward to continuing the tradition of excellence in manufacturing started by the Brownell family,” Mayall said in a statement.

12 Meter celebrates 50 years of sailing

The 12 Meter this year celebrates 50 years as the yacht that “dominated and defined the 10 American’s Cup challenges.”

Though the 12 Meter yacht has sailed for more than 100 years, its most auspicious debut happened at America’s Cup in 1958. Columbia took the honors that year, and the 12 Meter yacht continued to rule competition until 1987, when more than two dozen competed.

As the “12 Meter Golden Year of Racing,” 2009 will offer a yearlong calendar of events, concluding with a regatta in New York Harbor.

The 12 Meters will also be featured at regattas in Boston; Edgartown, Mass.; and New York City. The central event will be the 2009 12 Meter World Competition Sept. 22-27 in Newport, R.I. Highlights include a dockside party, lecture series, book signing, and film presentations, all of which are open to the public.

The famous Columbia will be making a reappearance at the competition, joined by as many as 35 boats — 14 of those from Europe and Australia, according to organizers.

For information, visit

Block Island marina gets go-ahead to expand

A Rhode Island Superior Court judge has reversed a ruling by the state Coastal Resources Management Council and will allow Champlin’s Marina to go ahead with a major expansion in Block Island’s Great Salt Pond.

The judge threw out an appeal by the Town of New Shoreham, which opposed the expansion, and criticized several members of the coastal council for what she said were numerous improper contacts with state and local officials while hearing the case, according to a report in the Providence Journal.

Champlin’s has spent more than $500,000 on coastal council hearings and court filings following a 5-to-5 vote by the full council in February 2006 that essentially denied the marina permission for any expansion, the newspaper reports.

Seal populations on the rise in New England

Recent surveys in southeastern Massachusetts have shown that gray and harbor seal populations in New England are growing, according to NOAA.

After being severely depleted by bounty programs in the early 1900s, NOAA scientists say the seals are returning to areas they previously inhabited.

The NOAA Fisheries Service conducts the surveys from December through February, pupping season for female gray seals. The surveys also count harbor seals, which give birth in late spring.

Gordon Waring, who leads the seal program at NOAA’s Northeast Fisheries Science Center laboratory in Woods Hole, Mass., says the region’s gray seal population has increased markedly since the first aerial surveys of the area were conducted 25 years ago. Waring says gray seals now inhabit Wasque Shoal, off the eastern end of Martha’s Vineyard and near newly created sandbars.

The Science Center conducts monthly aerial surveys of harbor seals and gray seals between October and May from Plymouth and Race Point at the tip of Cape Cod to Normans Land off the western end of Martha’s Vineyard.

For information, visit

This article originally appeared in the New England Home Waters Section of the May 2009 issue.